Lots of coaches do not do a good job communicating their value. They talk about what they do, their inner journeys, and why they are passionate about leadership — things that might make pleasant conversations but that don't get them hired.
There are 4 levels of value, and successful coaches understand the 4th level.
Level 0: All about me. This level is correctly named Level 0, because if this is how you talk about your coaching services, you will make $0.
Level I: Fuzzy message. Here, the coach talks about generic things they can do: improve leadership, help people be better communicators, increase productivity. These are important things for the coach to help clients do. However, they are too fuzzy to have much impact.
Level II: Strong message with blanket delivery. Here, the coach creates a specific message for a specific target market. For instance, instead of talking about generic productivity improvements, the coach talks about how he helps hospital executives make specific improvements in healthcare-specific metrics like length of stay, clinical utilization, and cost per patient day or diagnostic group. As a result, the coach generates interest and might attract prospects. He or she also has the makings of some compelling articles, speeches, and blogs that attract attention from a specific market. Level II also includes a deep understanding of the target audience's problems, what they are costing, how to solve them, a unique edge over other professionals, and proof of their results.
Level III: This is the fourth, most specific and powerful level. Here, the coach is able to ask great questions of a specific prospect, and uncover ways that he or she can help. The prospect gets that the coach has a clear understanding of his top issues, and has the credibility to address them through a coaching relationship. At the same time, the coach develops enough trust and rapport with the prospect that the prospect feels comfortable moving forward. Level III differs from Level II because the value discussion focuses exclusively on a single prospect and his or her (or his team's/organization's) needs. Now you have a hard-hitting, specific and practical value proposition.
Most coaches think that they offer compelling value, the same way most American Idol Contestants in early auditions think they can sing. The best coaches know how to present themselves to attract interest (Level II) and then covert prospects to clients by constructing a custom value proposition abou thow they can help (Level III). I sincerely hope you uderstand what I am talking about in this blog entry and are skilled at having Level III value conversations.